[OSM-talk-ie] Paths & footpaths

Neil O'Byrne neilweb1 at outlook.com
Fri Apr 30 12:48:09 UTC 2021


Footpaths are important as dedicated rights of way for pedestrians and other vulnerable users of the public realm.  Footpaths and pedestrian areas are the only part of the public realm provided for the safety and enjoyment of vulnerable users of the public realm.   Cyclists are not regarded as sufficiently vulnerable users for footpath access or use on a par with pedestrians unless the path has been specifically designed and dedicated for shared use.  It is not legal to cycle on footpaths as it endangers pedestrians and other dedicated vulnerable users such as the disabled, babies in buggies, the very young, elderly, visually impaired, the deaf or hard of hearing.  Access tagging does not reflect this.  There is too much attention to what vehicles can access a footpath.  Every able body person is a pedestrian first and the most vulnerable user of the public realm.  Other vulnerable users of the public realm can share the pedestrian space, but not at the cost of a vulnerability to pedestrians.
There is a language issue also.   Footpaths, sidewalks, footways and paths have overlapping understandings around the globe because English is not a standardised as some think.
In addition to the above, footpaths and soft verges where provided have an important role in general infrastructure.  Underground services for water, sewage, electricity and ICT (including broadband) are generally installed under footpaths in accordance with specified vertical and lateral separation.  This is so that they can be easily located and accessed for repair or upgrade.

-----Original Message-----
From: Colm Moore [mailto:colmmoore72 at hotmail.com] 
Sent: Friday 30 April 2021 12:41
To: talk-ie at openstreetmap.org
Subject: Re: [OSM-talk-ie] Paths & footpaths

Hi,

A track can take 4-wheel vehicles, a path can not.

Colm

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